Determination of the genome sequence of the acetic acid bacterium Acetobacter pasteurianus 386B isolated from the cocoa bean fermentation process.

Project Details


During the last years, artisan fermented food products witness an increased interest from both consumers and scientists. This increased interest is tied up with the wide variety of taste and flavour, texture and prolonged shelf life of these food products. These properties are mainly ascribed to the presence of lactic acid bacteria (LAB) and acetic acid bacteria (AAB). Recent research of the biodiversity of the cocoa bean fermentation process showed that only a limited number of species contribute considerably to the fermentation, among them the LAB Lactobacillus plantarum and lactobacillus fermentum,and the AAB Acetobacter pasteurianus. This project aims to determine the first genome sequence of the genus Acetobacter, in particular of A. pasteurianus 386B, a natural isolate obtained from a spontaneous cocoa bean fermentation process in Ghana. To achieve this, a combination of the innovative sequencing method developed by 454 Life sciences and the classical Sanger sequencing method will be applied. The genome sequence will provide a unique opportunity to unravel the genetic potential and thus the functionality and competitiveness of A. Pasteurianus in complex ecosystems. Based on the genome sequence, an AAB microarray will be developed, providing a valuable and unique research tool to study gene expression in complex AAB ecosystems. This will enable a better understanding of the biodiversity, metabolism and ecology of AAB in artisan fermented food products and drinks, the production of fine chemicals and food spoilage.
Effective start/end date1/01/0831/12/08

Flemish discipline codes

  • Biological sciences
  • Chemical sciences
  • Materials engineering


  • biology